Tradition – Reading & Book Launch

Join Marci Blackman and local PDX writers Cooper Lee Bombardier, Valentine Freeman, Cass J. Hodges and Galadriel Mozee for release of Blackman’s second novel, “Tradition,” following the story of Gus Weesfree, who witnessed a brutal crime in his hometown of Tradition, Ohio, at the age of 21 and fled, leaving behind the thriving African American community that existed there before and during World War II. Now an old man, he is compelled to confront his past only to find most of his memories buried by urban sprawl. Marci Blackman is an original member of the touring spoken word troupe, Sister Spit, and co-edited the ground-breaking anthology, “Beyond Definition: New Writing from Gay and Lesbian San Francisco. Blackman’s first novel, “Po Man’s Child,” received the American Library Association’s Stonewall award for Best LGBT Fiction and the Firecracker Alternative Book Award for Best Fiction.

Cooper Lee Bombardier is a visual artist, writer, and trans activist. Cooper’s writing has appeared in many periodicals, most recently in Original Plumbing, Lambda Literary Review, and The Rumpus. His work is published in several anthologies, including Sister Spit: Writing, Rants and Reminiscence from the Road, from City Lights Books and Trans/Love from Manic D Press. A veteran of the original Sister Spit tours, he has performed his writing all over the country. He currently lives in Portland, Oregon, where he has just earned his Master’s degree in publishing and is pursuing his MFA in Creative Writing/Nonfiction at Portland State University. Peep his art and writing

Valentine Freeman is a poet, creative director and right-on woman living with a blind cat and a genie on the West Coast. Her chapbook ‘What’s Truly is Feral’ is part of Marvin Bell’s New Poet Series from Lost Horse Press, and more work can be found in Publication Studio’s Weekday, the Portland Review, Livermore Street and elsewhere. She is not a real blonde.

Cass J. Hodges is a queer, a nerd and a story teller. A former camp counselor, horseback riding teacher and Christmas tree lot attendant, Cass believes in the story as a tool do dismantle oppression, and the poem as a pretty great way to say just about anything. A veteran of the Flagstaff Nat’l Poetry slam team, Cass has performed at events and festivals all over the western half of the country including the Seattle Slam and The Hugo House. His work can be found in The Portland Review, The Saltwater Quarterly and Original Plumbing Magazine. Check him out online at:

Galadriel Mozee is a fat, black, plant whisperer, story writer, poet, artist, and jam maker fighting for fat/food justice in Portland, OR, one homegrown home-cooked meal at a time. She writes about the prickly place where epiphany meets sorrow and has been featured on the walls of public bathrooms, in secret and hidden journals and in the Portland Women of Color Zine “How to live in the city of roses and avoid the pricks” Volume 3. You can read her writing at and buy her jam at but you can’t join her radical plant start CSA at because it’s all filled up for this year. Better luck next time.

We ask a $3-5 suggested donation, or the purchase of a book. No one will be turned away for lack of funds.